Blogs | VAST Insurance Agency | Marquette, MI
January 18, 2024

Nuclear Verdicts


Nuclear Verdicts by Alison Neumann If you have never heard the term “nuclear verdict” before, it is very likely you have heard of many well-publicized court cases that fall into this category.  This is the kind of court case where one side is awarded a very large sum of money by a jury.  The money awarded by the jury is higher than the traditional amount typically awarded in a similar case, often granted above $10 million in punitive damages.  In these cases, the jury aims to set a standard or teach a lesson to those at fault.  Nuclear verdicts are … Continue reading

January 18, 2024

Clean Your Roof!


Clean Your Roof! by Alison Neumann Property insurance is top of mind for most building owners today.  Wildfires, floods, and epic heatwaves have been destroying property all over the United States, and insurers are now hesitant to write property insurance for good reason.  What can a business owner or homeowner do to be attractive to property insurance carriers? When it comes to roofs, there are several tasks you as a business owner or homeowner can do to make a building more desirable to insurance carriers and to prevent problems from popping up.  In fact, roof maintenance is necessary when it … Continue reading

January 18, 2024

5 Rental Property Investment Tips


5 Rental Property Investment Tips by Alison Neumann Have you ever heard of the term, “make your money work for you”?  One way to put that term into action is through investing in real estate rental property.  Investing in rental property might seem like an easy way to make a profit, but there are several things you need to contemplate prior to signing on the dotted line.  Below are five points to consider prior to making the plunge. Recognizing a good rental property: Will the rental property be profitable and will you earn money from owning it?  If the location … Continue reading

January 18, 2024

Participating in Community Outreach


Participating in Community Outreach by Alison Neumann Engaging with the community holds immense benefits for both businesses and individuals.  It can enhance a company’s culture, improve retention rates, aid in recruitment efforts, and strengthen its overall reputation. Community outreach initiatives shed light on various issues, presenting opportunities for better communication and collaboration among like-minded organizations and individuals. There are numerous ways to get involved in community outreach, many of which involve volunteering time and effort. Recently, I attended a Regional Recycling Outreach meeting organized by the Michigan Recycling Coalition (MRC) in Escanaba, MI. This event proved to be eye-opening, providing … Continue reading

January 9, 2024

Data Q System & Challenges


Data Q System – two words and a letter that do not mean anything to most of the population. However, to those involved in trucking and transportation and heavy auto fleet operations the Data Q System is a familiar item, and one that causes frustration sometimes. So, what is the Data Q System? According to J.J. Keller Compliance Network, the Data Q System is “an electronic system for filing challenges, formally called requests for reviews, or RDRs, to data maintained by the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) in the Motor Carrier Management Information System (MCMIS).” [1] In laymen’s terms, … Continue reading

January 9, 2024

The Crucial Role of Builders Risk Policies


Embarking on the journey to find a new home can be a daunting task, especially when the perfect house proves hard to find. For those considering building or renovating, an important insurance policy to consider and discuss with your agent is a builders risk policy. A builders risk policy goes beyond standard coverage, offering protection for various aspects under the course of construction. This will typically include coverage for certain things, such as: Coverage for property under the course of construction Protection from losses on the building, equipment, and supplies Coverage for foundations, fixtures, machinery, equipment used to service the … Continue reading

January 9, 2024

What is Occupational Accident Coverage for Truckers?


In the trucking and motor carrier world there are boundless types of insurance that can benefit a business. One coverage that is not as widely discussed in trucking circles, but should be, is Occupational Accident Insurance, or Occ Acc for short. Occupational Accident Coverage is an important coverage for all motor carrier operations, but it is especially important for operations that use independent contractors (i.e., owner operators) in their operations. Occupational Accident Coverage, “provides coverage for lost wages, medical expenses, and death benefits for work-related injuries. It functions similarly to workers’ compensation insurance but is primarily used for independent contractors, … Continue reading

January 9, 2024

Independent Contractor or Employee?


This question comes up often, especially at the time of an audit or when starting a new business.  It is important to know the difference between an independent contractor and employee, not only for insurance purposes, but also for tax purposes as there can be consequences with the IRS for falsely classifying an employee as an independent contractor.  There is a misconception out there that if an individual is paid as a “1099 employee” it makes that individual  an independent contractor and the employer does not need work comp or need to file taxes for that employee.  The general rule … Continue reading

December 21, 2023

Trailer Interchange Coverage


The shipping / transportation / trucking industry is one that is extremely involved and spread out amongst all 50 states in the U.S. Companies throughout the process – from manufacturers to trucking companies to retailers and wholesalers – are hardly ever concentrated in one area. Efficiently moving goods from a point of origin to an ending destination is key for all industry participants, but especially for trucking and transportation companies. Their company livelihood relies on being able to move goods from one point to the next in a safe and profitable manner. One way companies move items efficiently is by … Continue reading

December 19, 2023

Navigating Surety Bonding Opportunities


Ever wondered if your business needs a surety bond? A surety bond is a commitment by one party to take financial responsibility for the debt, default, or failure of another. This contractual agreement involves three parties: the principal (the party needing the bond), the oblige or owner (the party requiring the bond), and the surety or guarantor. Surety bonds play a crucial role in protecting the oblige or owner from financial hardships. For instance, in contract bonds, project owners are shielded from financial setbacks in case a contractor decides to abandon a project. Similarly, notary bonds safeguard the public from … Continue reading

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